Today's Medal of Honor Moment for 29 September

 
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MONSOOR010Navy SEAL Mike Monsoor, OIF Medal of Honor recipient.

While not rising to the level of 101 Medals, like 5 August, today was still a day of fire, thunder, and blood in the history of the Medal, with 68 Medals of Honor marking actions on this day - including that of Navy SEAL Mike Monsoor, who earned his Medal in Iraq on this day in 2006.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We open with the Civil War, with 39 Medals awarded for actions on the same day, in 1864.  Many of those Medals were earned by African-American soldiers in the Battle of Chapin's Farm, as they strove to prove they were every bit the soldier, in spite of then-common opinion on the subject.

APPLETON, WILLIAM H.

Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, Company H, 4th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 15 June 1864; At New Market Heights, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Portsmouth, N.H. Born: 24 March 1843, Chichester, N.H. Date of issue: 18 February 1891. Citation: The first man of the Eighteenth Corps to enter the enemy's works at Petersburg, Va., 15 June 1864. Valiant service in a desperate assault at New Market Heights, Va., inspiring the Union troops by his example of steady courage.

ARCHER, LESTER

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company E, 96th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Fort Harrison, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: Fort Ann, N.Y. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Gallantry in placing the colors of his regiment on the fort.

BARNES, WILLIAM H.

Rank and organization: Private, Company C, 38th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: St. Marys County, Md. Date of issue 6 April 1865. Citation: Among the first to enter the enemy's works; although wounded.

BEATY, POWHATAN

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company G, 5th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Delaware County, Ohio. Birth: Richmond, Va. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took command of his company, all the officers having been killed or wounded, and gallantly led it.

CHER, THOMAS

Rank and organization: Private, Company I, 9th Maine Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Bangor, Maine. Birth: Bangor, Maine. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took a guidon from the hands of the bearer, mortally wounded, and advanced with it nearer to the battery than any other man.

BLUCHER, CHARLES

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company H, 188th Pennsylvania Infantry. Place and date: At Fort Harrison, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Harrisburgh, Pa. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Planted first national colors on the fortifications.

BRADY, JAMES

Rank and organization: Private, Company F, 10th New Hampshire Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Kingston, N.H. Birth: Boston, Mass. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Capture of flag.

BRONSON, JAMES H.

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company D, 5th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Delaware County, Ohio. Birth: Indiana County, Pa. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took command of his company, all the officers having been killed or wounded, and gallantly led it.

*BUCHANAN, GEORGE A.

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 148th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Ontario County, N.Y. Birth: New York. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took position in advance of the skirmish line and drove the enemy's cannoneers from their guns; was mortally wounded.

BUCK, F. CLARENCE

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company A, 21st Connecticut Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Windsor Conn. Birth: Hartford, Conn. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: A;though wounded, refused to leave the field until the fight closed.

CLAY, CECIL

Rank and organization: Captain, Company K, 58th Pennsylvania Infantry. Place and date: At Fort Harrison, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: Philadelphia, Pa. Date of issue: 19 April 1892. Citation: Led his regiment in the charge, carrying the colors of another regiment, and when severely wounded in the right arm, incurring loss of same, he shifted the colors to the left hand, which also became disabled by a gunshot wound.

EDGERTON, NATHAN H.

Rank and organization: Lieutenant and Adjutant, 6th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Philadelphia, Pa. Birth: ------. Date of issue: 30 March 1898. Citation: Took up the flag after 3 color bearers had been shot down and bore it forward, though himself wounded.

FLANAGAN, AUGUSTIN

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company A, 55th Pennsylvania Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Chest Springs, Pa. Birth: Cambria County, Pa. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Gallantry in the charge on the enemy's works: rushing forward with the colors and calling upon the men to follow him; was severely wounded.

FLEETWOOD, CHRISTIAN A.

Rank and organization: Sergeant Major, 4th U.S. Colored Troops, Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Baltimore, Md. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Seized the colors, after 2 color bearers had been shot down, and bore them nobly through the fight.

GARDINER, JAMES

Rank and organization: Private, Company I, 36th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: Gloucester, Va. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Rushed in advance of his brigade, shot a rebel officer who was on the parapet rallying his men, and then ran him through with his bayonet.

*GASSON, RICHARD

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company K, 47th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Fell dead while planting the colors of his regiment on the enemy's works.

GRAUL, WILLIAM

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company I, 188th Pennsylvania Infantry. Place and date: At Fort Harrison, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Reading, Pa. Birth: Reading, Pa. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: First to plant the colors of his State on the fortifications.

GRUEB, GEORGE

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 158th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: New York, N.Y. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Gallantry in advancing to the ditch of the enemy's works.

HARRIS, JAMES H.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company B, 38th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At New Market Heights, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: St. Marys County, Md. Date of issue: 18 February 1874. Citation: Gallantry in the assault.

HAWKINS, THOMAS R.

Rank and organization: Sergeant Major, 6th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Philadelphia, Pa. Birth: Cincinnati, Ohio. Date of issue: 8 February 1870. Citation: Rescue of regimental colors.

HICKOK, NATHAN E.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company A, 8th Connecticut Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Danbury, Conn. Birth: Danbury, Conn. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Capture of flag.

HILTON, ALFRED B.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company H, 4th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date. At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: Harford County, Md. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: When the regimental color bearer fell, this soldier seized the color and carried it forward, together with the national standard, until disabled at the enemy's inner line.

HOLLAND, MILTON M.

Rank and organization: Sergeant Major, 5th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Athens, Ohio. Born: 1844, Austin, Tex. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took command of Company C, after all the officers had been killed or wounded, and gallantly led it.

HORNE, SAMUEL B.

Rank and organization: Captain, Company H, 11th Connecticut Infantry. Place and date: At Fort Harrison, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Winsted, Conn. Born: 3 March 1843, Ireland Date of issue: 19 November 1897. Citation: While acting as an aide and carrying an important message, was severely wounded and his horse killed but delivered the order and rejoined his general.

JAMIESON, WALTER

Rank and organization: 1st Sergeant, Company B, 139th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Petersburg, Va., 30 July 1864; At Fort Harrison, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: New York, N.Y. Birth: France. Date of issue: 5 April 1898. Citation: Voluntarily went between the lines under a heavy fire at Petersburg, Va., to the assistance of a wounded and helpless officer, whom he carried within the Union lines. At Fort Harrison, Va., seized the regimental color, the color bearer and guard having been shot down, and, rushing forward, planted it upon the fort in full view of the entire brigade.

JOHNSON, JOSEPH E.

Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, Company A, 58th Pennsylvania Infantry. Place and date: At Fort Harrison, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: ------. Born: 5 February 1843, Lower Merion, Montgomery County, Pa. Date of issue: 1 April 1898. Citation: Though twice severely wounded while advancing in the assault, he disregarded his injuries and was among the first to enter the fort, where he was wounded for the third time.

KELLY, ALEXANDER

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company F, 6th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: ------. Birth. Pennsylvania. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Gallantly seized the colors, which had fallen near the enemy's lines of abatis, raised them and rallied the men at a time of confusion and in a place of the greatest danger.

KRAMER, THEODORE L.

Rank and organization: Private, Company G, 188th Pennsylvania Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Danville, Pa. Birth: Luzerne County, Pa. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took one of the first prisoners, a captain.

LAING, WILLIAM

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company F, 158th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: New York, N.Y. Birth: Hempstead, N.Y. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Was among the first to scale the parapet.

McKOWN, NATHANIEL A.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company B, 58th Pennsylvania Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at:------. Birth: Susquehanna County, Pa. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Capture of flag.

MEAGHER, THOMAS

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company G, 158th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Brooklyn N.Y. Birth: Scotland. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Led a section of his men on the enemy's works, receiving a wound while scaling a parapet.

PINN, ROBERT

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company I, 5th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Massillon, Ohio. Born: 1 March 1843, Stark County, Ohio. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took command of his company after all the officers had been killed or wounded and gallantly led it in battle.

RATCLIFF, EDWARD

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company C, 38th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: ------. Birth: James County, Va. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation. Commanded and gallantly led his company after the commanding officer had been killed; was the first enlisted man to enter the enemy's works.

SCHILLER, JOHN

Rank and organization: Private, Company E, 158th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: New York, N.Y. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Advanced to the ditch of the enemy's works.

SHEA, JOSEPH H.

Rank and organization: Private, Company K, 92d New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Baltimore, Md. Date of issue: March 1866. Citation: Gallantry in bringing wounded from the field under heavy fire.

SKELLIE, EBENEZER

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company D, 112th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Mina, N.Y. Birth: Mina, N.Y. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took the colors of his regiment, the color bearer having fallen, and carried them through the first charge; also, in the second charge, after all the color guards had been killed or wounded he carried the colors up to the enemy's works, where he fell wounded.

VAN WINKLE, EDWARD (EDWIN)

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company C, 148th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Phelps, N.Y. Birth: Phelps, N.Y. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Took position in advance of the skirmish line and drove the enemy's cannoneers from their guns.

VEAL, CHARLES

Rank and organization: Private, Company D, 4th U.S. Colored Troops. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Portsmouth, Va. Birth: Portsmouth Va. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: Seized the national colors after 2 color bearers had been shot down close to the enemy's works, and bore them through the remainder of the battle.

*WELLS, HENRY S.

Rank and organization: Private, Company C, 148th New York Infantry. Place and date: At Chapins Farm, Va., 29 September 1864. Entered service at: Phelps, N.Y. Birth: ------. Date of issue: 6 April 1865. Citation: With 2 comrades, took position in advance of the skirmish line, within short distance of the enemy's gunners, and drove them from their guns.

Indian Campaigns.  17 Medals, to include a second award.

BRANAGAN, EDWARD

Rank and organization: Private, Company F, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 19 November 1872. Citation. Gallantry in action.

DODGE, FRANCIS S.

Rank and organization: Captain, Troop D, 9th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: Near White River Agency, Colo., 29 September 1879. Entered service at: Danvers, Mass. Born: 11 September 1842, Danvers, Mass. Date of issue: 2 April 1898. Citation: With a force of 40 men rode all night to the relief of a command that had been defeated and was besieged by an overwhelming force of Indians, reached the field at daylight, joined in the action and fought for 3 days.

FOSTER, WILLIAM

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company F, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Entered service at: ------. Birth: England, Date of issue: 19 November 1872. Citation: Gallantry in action.

GRIMES, EDWARD P.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company F, 5th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Milk River, Colo., 29 September to 5 October 1879. Entered service at:------. Birth: Dover, N.H. Date of issue: 27 January 1880. Citation: The command being almost out of ammunition and surrounded on 3 sides by the enemy, he voluntarily brought up a supply under heavy flre at almost point blank range.

LARKIN, DAVID

Rank and organization: Farrier, Company F, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 19 November 1872. Citation: Gallantry in action.

LAWTON, JOHN S.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company D, 5th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Milk River, Colo., 29 September 1879. Entered service at:------. Birth: Bristol, R.l. Date of issue: 7 June 1880. Citation: Coolness and steadiness under fire; volunteered to accompany a small detachment on a very dangerous mission.

McMASTERS, HENRY A.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company A, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Augusta, Maine. Date of issue: 19 November 1872. Citation: Gallantry in action.

McNAMARA, WILLIAM

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company F, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Entered service at:------. Birth: Ireland. Date of issue: 19 November 1872. Citation: Gallantry in action.

MERRILL, JOHN

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company F, 5th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Milk River, Colo., 29 September 1879. Entered service at: ------. Birth: New York, N.Y. Date of issue: 7 June 1880. Citation: Though painfully wounded, he remained on duty and rendered gallant and valuable service.

MURPHY, EDWARD F.

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company D, 5th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Milk River, Colo., 29 September 1879. Entered service at:------. Birth: Wayne County, Pa. [)ate of issue: 23 April 1880. Citation: Gallantry in action.

O'NEILL, WILLIAM

Rank and organization: Corporal, Company I, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Tariffville, Conn. Date of issue: 19 November 1872. Citation: Bravery in action.

PHILIPSEN, WILHELM O.

Rank and organization: Blacksmith, Troop D, 5th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Milk River, Colo., 29 September 1879. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 12 December 1894. Citation: With 9 others voluntarily attacked and captured a strong position held by Indians.

POPPE, JOHN A.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company F, 5th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Milk River, Colo., 29 September to S October 1879. Entered service at:------. Birth: Cincinnati, Ohio. Date of issue: 27 lanuary 1880. Citation: Gallantry in action.

PRATT, JAMES

Rank and organization: Blacksmith, Company I, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Entered service at: Bellefontaine, Ohio. Birth: Bellefontaine, Ohio. Date of issue: 19 November 1872. Citation: Gallantry in action.

RANKIN, WILLIAM

Rank and organization: Private, Company F, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Lewistown, Pa. Date of issue: 19 November 1872. Citation: Gallantry in action with Indians.
WIDMER, JACOB

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, Company D, 5th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Milk River, Colo., 29 September 1879. Entered service at: ------. Birth: Germany. Date of issue: 4 May 1880. Citation: Volunteered to accompany a small detachment on a very dangerous mission.

WILSON, WILLIAM (SECOND AWARD)

Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company I, 4th U.S. Cavalry. His first came on 28 March, 1872, and we'll put that one up then.Place and date: At Red River, Tex., 29 September 1872. Citation: Distinguished conduct in action with Indians, Red River, Tex.  He's one of the 19 men who were awarded the Medal twice.

First World War - the battles still rage in France, having already produced 15 Medals in the previous 3 days, and today they reach a crescendo of tumult, with the award of 10 Medals for actions in France on this day in 1918.

ADKINSON, JOSEPH B.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company C, 119th Infantry, 30th Division. Place and date: Near Bellicourt, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Memphis, Tenn. Born: 4 January 1892, Egypt, Tenn. G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919. Citation: When murderous machinegun fire at a range of 50 yards had made it impossible for his platoon to advance, and had caused the platoon to take cover Sgt. Adkinson alone, with the greatest intrepidity, rushed across the 50 yards of open ground directly into the face of the hostile machinegun kicked the gun from the parapet into the enemy trench, and at the point of the bayonet captured the 3 men manning the gun. The gallantry and quick decision of this soldier enabled the platoon to resume its advance.

EGGERS, ALAN LOUIS

Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Machine Gun Company, 107th Infantry, 27th Division. Place and date: Near Le Catelet, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Summit, N.J. Birth: Saranac Lake, N.Y. G.O. No.: 20, W.D., 1919. Citation: Becoming separated from their platoon by a smoke barrage, Sgt. Eggers, Sgt. John C. Latham and Cpl. Thomas E. O'Shea took cover in a shell hole well within the enemy's lines. Upon hearing a call for help from an American tank, which had become disabled 30 yards from them, the 3 soldiers left their shelter and started toward the tank, under heavy fire from German machineguns and trench mortars. In crossing the fire-swept area Cpl. O'Shea was mortally wounded, but his companions, undeterred, proceeded to the tank, rescued a wounded officer, and assisted 2 wounded soldiers to cover in a sap of a nearby trench. Sgt. Eggers and Sgt. Latham then returned to the tank in the face of the violent fire, dismounted a Hotchkiss gun, and took it back to where the wounded men were, keeping off the enemy all day by effective use of the gun and later bringing it, with the wounded men, back to our lines under cover of darkness.

GAFFNEY, FRANK

Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company G, 108th Infantry, 27th Division. Place and date: Near Ronssoy, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Niagara Falls, N.Y. Birth: Buffalo, N.Y. G.O. No.: 20, W.D., 1919. Citation: Pfc. Gaffney, an automatic rifleman, pushing forward alone, after all the other members of his squad had been killed, discovered several Germans placing a heavy machinegun in position. He killed the crew, captured the gun, bombed several dugouts, and, after killing 4 more of the enemy with his pistol, held the position until reinforcements came up, when 80 prisoners were captured.

GUMPERTZ, SYDNEY G.

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company E, 132d Infantry, 33d Division. Place and date: In the Bois-de-Forges, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Chicago, Ill. Born: 24 October 1879, San Raphael, Calif. G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919. Citation: When the advancing line was held up by machinegun fire, 1st Sgt. Gumpertz left the platoon of which he was in command and started with 2 other soldiers through a heavy barrage toward the machinegun nest. His 2 companions soon became casualties from bursting shells, but 1st Sgt. Gumpertz continued on alone in the face of direct fire from the machinegun, jumped into the nest and silenced the gun, capturing 9 of the crew.

LATHAM, JOHN CRIDLAND

Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Machine Gun Company, 107th Infantry, 27th Division. Place and date: Near Le Catelet, France, 29 September 1918. Entered .service at: Rutherford, N.J. Born: 3 March 1888, Windemere, England. G.O. No.: 20, W.D., 1919. Citation: Becoming separated from their platoon by a smoke barrage, Sgt. Latham, Sgt. Alan L. Eggers, and Cpl. Thomas E. O'Shea took cover in a shellhole well within the enemy's lines. Upon hearing a call for help from an American tank which had become disabled 30 yards from them, the 3 soldiers left their shelter and started toward the tank under heavy fire from German machineguns and trench mortars. In crossing the fire-swept area, Cpl. O'Shea was mortally wounded, but his companions, undeterred, proceeded to the tank, rescued a wounded officer, and assisted 2 wounded soldiers to cover in the sap of a nearby trench. Sgts. Latham and Eggers then returned to the tank in the face of the violent fire, dismounted a Hotchkiss gun, and took it back to where the wounded men were keeping off the enemy all day by effective use of the gun and later bringing it with the wounded men back to our lines under cover of darkness.

*LEMERT, MILO

Rank and organization: First Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company G, 119th Infantry, 30th Division. Place and date: Near Bellicourt, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Crossville, Tenn. Birth: Marshalltown, Iowa. G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919. Citation: Seeing that the left flank of his company was held up, he located the enemy machinegun emplacement, which had been causing heavy casualties. In the face of heavy fire he rushed it single-handed, killing the entire crew with grenades. Continuing along the enemy trench in advance of the company, he reached another emplacement, which he also charged, silencing the gun with grenades. A third machinegun emplacement opened up on him from the left and with similar skill and bravery he destroyed this also. Later, in company with another sergeant, he attacked a fourth machinegun nest, being killed as he reached the parapet of the emplacement. His courageous action in destroying in turn 4 enemy machinegun nests prevented many casualties among his company and very materially aided in achieving the objective.

*LUKE, FRANK, JR. (Air Mission)

Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army Air Corps, 27th Aero Squadron, 1st Pursuit Group, Air Service. Place and date: Near Murvaux, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Phoenix, Ariz. Born: 19 May 1897, Phoenix, Ariz. G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919. Citation: After having previously destroyed a number of enemy aircraft within 17 days he voluntarily started on a patrol after German observation balloons. Though pursued by 8 German planes which were protecting the enemy balloon line, he unhesitatingly attacked and shot down in flames 3 German balloons, being himself under heavy fire from ground batteries and the hostile planes. Severely wounded, he descended to within 50 meters of the ground, and flying at this low altitude near the town of Murvaux opened fire upon enemy troops, killing 6 and wounding as many more. Forced to make a landing and surrounded on all sides by the enemy, who called upon him to surrender, he drew his automatic pistol and defended himself gallantly until he fell dead from a wound in the chest.

*O'SHEA, THOMAS E.

Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Machine Gun Company, 107th Infantry, 27th Division. Place and date: Near Le Catelet, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Summit, N.J. Birth: New York, N.Y. G.O. No.: 20, W.D., 1919. Citation: Becoming separated from their platoon by a smoke barrage, Cpl. O'Shea, with 2 other soldiers, took cover in a shell hole well within the enemy's lines. Upon hearing a call for help from an American tank, which had become disabled 30 yards from them, the 3 soldiers left their shelter and started toward the tank under heavy fire from German machineguns and trench mortars. In crossing the fire-swept area Cpl. O'Shea was mortally wounded and died of his wounds shortly afterwards.

*SMITH, FRED E.

Rank and organization: Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army, 308th Infantry, 77th Division. Place and date: Near Binarville, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Bartlett, N. Dak. Birth: Rockford, Ill. G.O. NO.: 49, W.D., 1922. Citation: When communication from the forward regimental post of command to the battalion leading the advance had been interrupted temporarily by the infiltration of small parties of the enemy armed with machineguns, Lt. Col. Smith personally led a party of 2 other officers and 10 soldiers, and went forward to reestablish runner posts and carry ammunition to the front line. The guide became confused and the party strayed to the left flank beyond the outposts of supporting troops, suddenly coming under fire from a group of enemy machineguns only 50 yards away. Shouting to the other members of his party to take cover this officer, in disregard of his danger, drew his pistol and opened fire on the German guncrew. About this time he fell, severely wounded in the side, but regaining his footing, he continued to fire on the enemy until most of the men in his party were out of danger. Refusing first-aid treatment he then made his way in plain view of the enemy to a handgrenade dump and returned under continued heavy machinegun fire for the purpose of making another attack on the enemy emplacements. As he was attempting to ascertain the exact location of the nearest nest, he again fell, mortally wounded .

VALENTE, MICHAEL

Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company D, 107th Infantry, 27th Division. Place and date: East of Ronssoy, France, 29 September 1918. Entered service at: Ogdensburg N.Y. Born: 5 February 1895, Cassino, Italy. G.O. No.: 16, W.D., i929. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action with the enemy during the operations against the Hindenburg line, east of Ronssoy, France, 29 September 1918. Finding the advance of his organization held up by a withering enemy machinegun fire, Pvt. Valente volunteered to go forward. With utter disregard of his own personal danger, accompanied by another soldier, Pvt. Valente rushed forward through an intense machinegun fire directly upon the enemy nest, killing 2 and capturing 5 of the enemy and silencing the gun. Discovering another machinegun nest close by which was pouring a deadly fire on the American forces, preventing their advance, Pvt. Valente and his companion charged upon this strong point, killing the gunner and putting this machinegun out of action. Without hesitation they jumped into the enemy's trench, killed 2 and captured 16 German soldiers. Pvt. Valente was later wounded and sent to the rear.

 

Korea, during the dark days of 1950.

*CHRISTIANSON, STANLEY R.

Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps, Company E, 2d Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein.). Place and date: Seoul, Korea, 29 September 1950. Entered service at: Mindoro, Wis. Born: 24 January 1925, Mindoro, Wis. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with Company E, in action against enemy aggressor forces at Hill 132, in the early morning hours. Manning 1 of the several listening posts covering approaches to the platoon area when the enemy commenced the attack, Pfc. Christianson quickly sent another marine to alert the rest of the platoon. Without orders, he remained in his position and, with full knowledge that he would have slight chance of escape, fired relentlessly at oncoming hostile troops attacking furiously with rifles, automatic weapons, and incendiary grenades. Accounting for 7 enemy dead in the immediate vicinity before his position was overrun and he himself fatally struck down, Pfc. Christianson, by his superb courage, valiant fighting spirit, and devotion to duty, was responsible for allowing the rest of the platoon time to man positions, build up a stronger defense on that flank, and repel the attack with 41 of the enemy destroyed, many more wounded, and 3 taken prisoner. His self-sacrificing actions in the face of overwhelming odds sustain and enhance the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. Pfc. Christianson gallantly gave his life for his country. 

And one of the most recent Medals - Operation Iraqi Freedom -  A SEAL in the desert.

*MONSOOR, MICHAEL, A.

Rank and Organization: Master-At-Arms Second Class (Sea, Air And Land), United States Navy

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as automatic weapons gunner for Naval Special Warfare Task Group Arabian Peninsula, in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM on 29 September 2006. As a member of a combined SEAL and Iraqi Army Sniper Overwatch Element, tasked with providing early warning and stand-off protection from a rooftop in an insurgent held sector of Ar Ramadi, Iraq, Petty Officer Monsoor distinguished himself by his exceptional bravery in the face of grave danger. In the early morning, insurgents prepared to execute a coordinated attack by reconnoitering the area around the element's position. Element snipers thwarted the enemy's initial attempt by eliminating two insurgents. The enemy continued to assault the element, engaging them with a rocket-propelled grenade and small arms fire. As enemy activity increased, Petty Officer Monsoor took position with his machine gun between two teammates on an outcropping of the roof. While the SEALs vigilantly watched for enemy activity, an insurgent threw a hand grenade from an unseen location, which bounced off Petty Officer Monsoor's chest and landed in front of him. Although only he could have escaped the blast, Petty Officer Monsoor chose instead to protect his teammates. Instantly and without regard for his own safety, he threw himself onto the grenade to absorb the force of the explosion with his body, saving the lives of his two teammates. By his undaunted courage, fighting spirit, and unwavering devotion to duty in the face of certain death, Petty Officer Monsoor gallantly gave his life for his country, thereby reflecting great credit upon himself and upholding the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

 

*Asterisk indicates posthumous award.

(John Donovan is a Legionnaire with the Department of Kansas with service in the U.S. Army. He blogs at his own website The Castle Argghhh!)

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Monsoor=Teh Awesome.

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News from the World of Military and Veterans Issues. Iraq and A-Stan in parenthesis reflects that the author is currently deployed to that theater.